Gargantuan Crocodile Snatches Zebras Crossing a River

Nile crocodile jaws

Written by Angie Menjivar

Updated: October 22, 2023

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No matter how many videos of the brutality of nature you watch, it’s still surprising when you see it happen again. You can understand the circle of life and animalistic instincts and still react strongly when watching a huge croc snap its jaw shut on an innocent animal; especially one that doesn’t know the ruthlessness of killing another animal–an herbivore.

Watch tragic moments unfold as huge crocs attack and kill migrating zebras.

Witness the Shocking Moment a Crocodile Hunts Migrating Zebras

This clip starts with a shot of a mara crocodile swimming through muddy water. You hear some chatter in the background as the next scene unfolds. Several zebras have made it across the river and are making their way up onto the rocks to safety. It’s the great migration — even though this river is home to some of the largest crocodiles in the world, the zebras know no other path than through.

Animal Groups - Zeal of Zebras

Zeal of zebras, traveling together, as they normally do. During migration, they travel in thousands and join with others, including wildebeests.

There’s one zebra that catches the eye of a croc. It’s trying to get through the water but it’s struggling as if its feet are sinking into the mud. There are several others behind it that seem to be struggling as well, except they’re not making any headway. Their greater struggle helps them because it isolates the one who’s managing to forge ahead.

The croc is not hesitant for a moment. It goes right for it, twists its body around, and bites the back of the zebra’s neck. A woman exclaims as it happens. The croc pushes it down into the water while the surrounding zebras focus solely on getting out of the water as quickly as possible.

Both the croc and zebra disappear under the muddy waters for several moments as the other zebras scramble onto the rocks. The drowning, attacked zebra emerges for a moment and you watch as it takes its last breath, splashes of water coming out through its nose. It disappears again underwater to meet its final fate.

The video cuts to another scene of a zebra struggling. The spectators don’t see it at first because it’s camouflaged well, but a croc has already taken a bite of the zebra. The zebra can’t escape the bite on its back and just as it’s looking about, the previously drowned zebra’s body bobs up momentarily just a few feet ahead of it. It’s tragic and not easy to watch. But it’s nature.

Is It Normal for Crocodiles to Eat Zebras?

Safari Animals You MUST See: Zebra

Zebras are graceful creatures that can move quickly if necessary and are not common prey for crocodiles.

Crocodiles may occasionally consume zebras but prefer single bite-sized meals. As a result, they primarily feed on fish and small creatures. The reason for the crocodiles feeding on zebras is because there are so many.

It is during this great migration that these animals are able to feast on such a large scale. Many of these crocodiles have not had a meal this large all year long. While it’s heartbreaking to watch such a beautiful creature as a Zebra be taken down, it’s important to understand the cycle of life within the animal kingdom.

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About the Author

Angie Menjivar is a writer at A-Z-Animals primarily covering pets, wildlife, and the human spirit. She has 14 years of experience, holds a Bachelor's degree in psychology, and continues her studies into human behavior, working as a copywriter in the mental health space. She resides in North Carolina, where she's fallen in love with thunderstorms and uses them as an excuse to get extra cuddles from her three cats.

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